Top Interview Questions of 2021 & Candidate Guide to STAR Method

Brianna Rooney
March 31, 2021

Deciding what to prepare and how to prepare for an interview can be complicated. You can search the internet in hopes of finding an interview guide but the best way to prepare, is to prepare yourself through practice questions. Below is a list of the most common and frequently asked interview questions in 2021. By reading these questions, you, as a candidate, will know what some of the questions recruiters may have in store for you. Take this as a big heads up on what’s to come and start thinking about how you would choose to respond!  

Top Questions asked of Candidates:

1. Tell me about yourself.

2. Tell me about a challenge/ conflict that you faced at work and how did you dealt with it?

3. Tell me about  a time you demonstrated leadership skills.

4. What are your greatest strengths? What are your greatest weaknesses?

5. Why do you want to work for this company? Why should we hire you?

6. Why did you leave your last/current position?

7. Where do you see yourself in the next 3-5 years?

8. How would your boss and coworkers describe you?

9. Is there a question you thought/ hoped I would ask you that I didn’t? How would you answer it?

How to Answer:

As the interviewee, it is important to thoughtfully create compelling answers. This can be done using the STAR method. The STAR interview method allows for a simple format in which you can use to thoroughly answer interview questions when it comes to providing real-life examples of how you overcame a past challenge in the workplace.

Situation

When stating the situation, it is important to be clear about the context. Give descriptions of the role, the department, and a brief summary of the situation. Details are helpful in conveying the situation in which you demonstrated this particular capability.

Task

When it comes to task, this is where you provide a simple description of the task in which you undertook in order to address the situation.

Action

Action is where you describe the steps you took in order to resolve the situation. This is the most important part of your response because it shows how you overcame the challenge. Make sure to choose an example that your action parallels with the key behavior that is being evaluated.

Results

When explaining results, finish with an achievement statement that shows proof that your actions were successful and effective in the end!

**When Using STAR Method Consider…

Detail to show dimension and complexity of the situation.

Pronouns to show that “I” did it, not “we” did it.

Clarity of the impact and resolution.

Questions for you (the Candidate) to ask the Interviewer:

Often time, during an interview, the interviewer will ask (multiple times) if you have any questions. It’s important to have questions and any concerns you may have in regards to the company! Compile and note a list of questions that show you are prepared and interested in the opportunity at hand. Here’s some examples of potential questions to ask...

Find out Specifics About the Role

- What would you consider to be the day-to-day responsibilities for this position?

- Is there training? What would my first day/ week look like?

- What does this position contribute to the company as a whole?

- Is there anyone in this department that I would be able to shadow?

Get to Know the Interviewer on a Personal Level

- What aspect of the company made you want to work for this company? How long have you worked there?

- Why did you choose to work in this industry?

- What has been your greatest accomplishment within this company? How did you do so?

- What goals do you have within this company?

- What goals do you have outside of work?

- What are your hobbies?

- What do you enjoy doing on the weekends?

Find out About the Management Style

- How do the leaders set the employees up for ultimate success?

- Are employees encouraged to ask questions?

- How does the company respond to employee feedback?

Ask About the Company Culture

- What is the company’s work culture?

- How would you describe the work environment?

- How does the company facilitate company culture?

- Does the company offer anything in the way of benefits?

Learn About the Company History

- How was the company started?

- What is the company’s mission statement?

- What are the company’s core values?

- Where do you see the company in the next 3-5 years?

What are the Company’s Opportunities for Growth

- What type of training does the company offer to its employees?

- How do company leaders promote growth?

- What does it take to become a top-performing employee within the company?

What is Next...

- What are the next steps moving forward?

- Is there anything else that I can provide you with?

- Do you have any other questions for me?

- When will I be hearing back from you in regards to this opportunity?

When it comes to interviews, preparation is key; a daunting task, but necessary to be successful. Don’t feel intimidated by unique questions, you should always be thinking on your feet! Be polite, on point with your responses, and don’t forget to be yourself. Have fun building your future!